Confidentiality means not telling anyone what you've been told by a teacher, a student or a parent unless you have their permission, knowledge or if you think that the child is going to be in danger.
We ensure all our written and electronic files are secure by keping them on a password protected computer which is only accessed by named staff members and viewed by appropriate offciials like ofsted and parents where a time to view them is organised. Paper files that have children's personal details in are locked in a filing cabinet and accessed by key people, management, ofsted and parents who can see their child's file when they want, which complies with the freedom of information act and EYFS regulations.
Why confidentiality is important is because parents need to trust us to keep thier information confidential. Children's safety and well-being may be put at risk if details about their property or where they live, phone numbers, email, personal medical details and their daily routines are shared publicly. The setting also has a legal obligation to meet laws and codes of practice that may result in complaints and maybe prosecution if not followed.
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What is meant by confidentiality
Confidentialtiy is about respecting other people's rights to privay and keeping safe the information that they have provided. When working with children and young people there will be times when parents, colleagues or even children themselves will give us information that is not intended to be shared around. Sometimes this information may be of a personal nature or simply not relevant to other people. Information of this kind is called 'confidential' and as professionals we are expected to recognise situations when information is likely to be confidential and to ensure that such information is not passed on to others. As a general rule, you should consider that all information gained during the course of your work is confidential, this means anything that you would not be able to find out as a member of the public is likely to be confidential. In addition, most settings now have a confidentiality policy and you must read and follow it.
Data protection act 1998
What is confidentiality
Confidentiality means not passing on information about a person, organisation, or situation to anyone who has who does not have a right or need to know it. There are many situations in which you should think about confidentiality. Personal information about anyone - parents, other staff members – should in general never be discussed with anyone else unless you have that person’s permission, or there is a very good reason why someone else needs to know. Even then, sensitive information should not be passed on unless it is essential. For instance, it may be necessary to pass on the information that someone is sick, but not to say what their illness is. Information about contact details should never be passed on without permission, as to do so could place someone in danger When working with children, there particular issues concerning child protection and you will learn more about this when working towards your NVQ and technical certificate.
The dangers of gossip.
Confidentiality can be broken deliberately, or by accident - for instance by leaving written information around where it can be seen. Probably the most common way of breaking confidentiality, however, is gossip – idle conversation about other people. This includes talking about parents or staff to or in front of other parents, or in front of the children, and talking about any of the children to other parents or in front of other children.
In an Early Years setting it is important to remember that children are people too; they have a right not to be discussed without good reason, and children who can talk may also notice, understand and pass on much more than you think if you talk in front of them!